July 13, 2021
Denver, Colorado, USA
AL - 5, NL - 2
Q. I think Vlad has five home runs against you guys this year, so how nice was it to have one for your team?
KEVIN CASH: It was great. Everybody's talking about how good he is and how good he is going to be. I'm not that thrilled that he's going to be that good because he's in our division. But, look, getting go meet him and all these guys, so much appreciation and respect. And Vlady is just a fun talent that we are all going to get to see for many years.
Q. The first inning, Shohei batted and put his bat down and grabbed his club and went and pitched and set them down, one, two, three. What was it like to see that history happen in front of you?
KEVIN CASH: We are all in awe of his ability to do that. He came in hyped up on this stage, gets warmed up and then to take that at-bat, he was sitting in his chair like catching his breath. But the way he has handled everything makes it that much more special, watching him interact with the players and teammates throughout this and handle the media, it is pretty remarkable.
Q. Did you have a plan with Chapman, whether to use him or not in this game?
KEVIN CASH: Yeah, we had talked and decided he was fine. He went to the back of the list, but with Chap, if he's pitching, you know that generally good things are happening and you're winning the game. But the way that it slotted, I'm glad it worked out, really happy with the pitchers and the way it just stayed in order a lot. That's the most stressful thing.
Q. Did his recent struggles factor into the decision or the Yankees input?
KEVIN CASH: None whatsoever. None whatsoever. He's a big game pitcher.
Q. How much conversation with Chris Bassitt was there knowing he threw 94 pitches two days ago over seven innings and he threw 24 today. Coach went out, two outs, based loaded and he got the strikeout. What was the conversation?
KEVIN CASH: There wasn't a ton of conversation. We knew he was able to pitch. Very aware of his workload, but I also think Bass wanted to pitch. He was excited to be here and he picked us up in the inning.
Q. Did you usually find that the team that has a 13-3 strikeout advantage with their pitchers usually wins the game?
KEVIN CASH: I didn't even know, it was happening so fast I didn't know what was going on. I just knew we had the lead.
Q. With Vlad, how much of his dad's play do you see in him now that you've seen him up close and in person?
KEVIN CASH: Obviously Hall of Famer. I think it's probably most fair to separate the two. They are both very talented and Vlady, Sr. was very talented and I think Vlady Guerrero, Jr. is probably going to pave his way to being very special. They can hit any pitch. If there's one thing that's similar, they can handle any ball in the zone.
Q. What was it like for to you see Zunino hit that home run?
KEVIN CASH: Pretty special. Pretty special for all the Rays, everybody that got in, Z hitting the home run, Joey getting a hit and making a couple nice plays and Kit coming in and doing his thing for an inning, great representation for our organization.
Q. The American League somehow won eight in a row. Did you feel the pressure to maintain that winning streak here?
KEVIN CASH: No. I felt the pressure of getting everybody in when we worked really hard. And Q, our bench coach, did a tremendous job. The guys that wanted to pitch and needed to pitch. We got in the position players, we got Nelly an at-bat. The only guy I'm still sick to my stomach about is Tim Anderson, he played two innings of defense and we left him stranded on deck. Other than that, there was no pressure of win or lose.
Q. Jared Walsh had not played a single big league inning and had not played since April. How surprised were you he made that play in left?
KEVIN CASH: Play of the game. Probably a question for him. I don't think he was too thrilled going out there, he was nervous, but man, he picked us up in a big way and almost had a home run in the end. The way the rosters are picked and selected, you try to, you know, piece it together and be fair to everybody. And Walsh's versatility I think is part of why he's an All-Star. His bat obviously is, but being able to play the outfield, play the first base, certainly helps.
Q. Did you talk to him before the game, like you might be going out to left field?
KEVIN CASH: Yeah, we told him. He looked at me like I had two heads, and he said, "I'll go with it or whatever". Once he made the catch, we were all good. We were high-fiving pretty good.
Q. You mentioned earlier, you played against Guerrero all the time but getting a chance to be around him in this setting for two or three days, what have you learned about the guy?
KEVIN CASH: Just how sincere he is. You watch a guy from the other side, and I mean, he is having so much fun. He is dominating the American League right now with a bat in his hand. He's enjoying it. He should be. But the way that he interacted with just our staff and everybody, he's having a lot of fun.
Q. Ohtani mentioned he really appreciated what you did for him this week, lobbying for the DH thing and other stuff. What did you come to appreciate most about him and your couple days around him?
KEVIN CASH: Look, I appreciate what he's done for our game and our fans. There's a lot of stuff that we are coming out of, obviously, with the pandemic, and for his talent to get baseball going again, he's been a big part of it.
So the appreciation goes to him and similar to Vlad Guerrero, Jr. Those guys have so much on their plate and the way they handle it with such humility, class and go about their business, that's probably the thing that stands out.
Q. Obviously have Vlady winning MVP, but Soto, Ohtani, their first All-Star Games. And do you feel you were part of something special, all of these guys coming together on one field tonight?
KEVIN CASH: Look, baseball is certainly trending in the right direction with all the talent. It's covering many countries and we should feel special, and it's an honor to sit there with those guys and have simple conversations for two days and then, you know, you've got to go compete against them after that. But for this, I think we should all be -- I know I am, very excited about the talent that we have and the youth that is coming into this game.
FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports